Does this sound like good advice?

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by MikeBarber, Feb 19, 2005.

  1. I feel like I'm out of my depth on the subject of micing/amping my DB. I know that I want to find a way to amplify my DB (for live performance) that will both give an authentic/true/pure/transparent/however-you-want-to-describe-it representation of the instrument and not break my budget. I have a decent amount of available credit with the company i am financing my DB through, however i don't want to sink much further in to debt... so I am thinking of keeping it around the $200 mark (possibly willing to go a little higher if needed).

    I contacted the place I bought my DB from and asked if they carry, or can order for me, some mics i found in my price range. My email reads:

    The response I received was:
    I am not sure about his recommendations. Don't these transducer pickups only give you what is at the bridge? I have used a Scheuller on my sitar and was completely turned off by what I perceive to be the capabilities of the transducer pickup... it doesn't give a real representation. How could it? Musical instruments are too complex to be able to have their sound -- character, nuances and all -- captured at a single point!

    I don't want just the notes to be amplified, I want the instrument to be amplified. When I get in to my free/avant-garde/outside/fringe playing I make little scratches with the bow, I'll knock on the body in different places... I'll slap my palms on the strings... I'll use the whole bass as a playground for creativity and expression. I need something that will amplify that.

  2. Jazzman


    Nov 26, 2002
    Raleigh, NC
    I would recommend staying away from the fishman B-100 pickup at all costs. If you want the sound of a mic in a pickup, it would either have to be the david gage realist or the fishman full circle.

    I have no experience with the mics you listed above, but I have used the K&K Golden Trinity in the past. It yielded a very good sound...but seemed to work best when combined with a pickup.

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    If you are set on a mic, try and find a used AKG D112. They are fantastic for the money. Difficult to make it feedback, and easy to get a good sound with.
  4. IMO, anyone who recommends the Fishman BP-100 must not know squat about DB amplification. THat has got to be the most universally loathed POS ever to be mass produced. I'd look elsewhere for advice, like in the Newbie links thread of this forum for starters. It takes a while to sort through it all, but if you take the time to do it you'll end up with something you're happy with. It will also take some trial and error, as it's very unlikely you'll get it right the first time. Welcome to the quest!
  5. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    +1! The BP-100 sounds like cats boinkin' on a tin roof. Yecchh.
  6. Trial and error is rather expensive... I can't afford to be adventurous like that. Thus I am hoping the experience of others can help guide me. I can't believe no one seems to have used the AudioTechnica ATM35 considering it is a clip-on that seems to be well suited for the double bass (clip-on = more freedom regarding movement vs a mic on a stand/pole).


    The AKG D112 looks to be in my price range, however I used a mic similar to this (I think it was by AuidoTechnica, not AKG, but looked the same) and had some problems with feedback... had to keep it hot and arco caused many problems... of course, that could have been the sound guys fault. :p

  7. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Saint Louis, MO USA
    I just bought an Audix microphone. It's called the Micro-D. I think it is the same as the ax20 (I think that's the model #) but with a hypercariod element. It's designed for use with drums, but it is very flat and is fairly flat to 40 hz.

    I was able to easily rig the provided gooseneck to swing from the back of the fb. It's a condenser, so you'll need phantom. Right now, I am using my dbx channel strip (286a) for a preamp, and overall, I'm pretty happy with the sound. It's natural, tough to feedback and and with the added flexibility of using the channel strip, it's plenty fat.

    I have seen the rig on ebay new for less than $200.
  8. Many people who post here will be happy to offer advice, and if you mine for a lot of it, you can make the most educated guess possible. However, my point is that even with all that, there is no way to predict how pickup A, mic B, preamp C, etc. will sound with your bass until you try it. In addition, pickup A might not work so well with amp D, and infinite other permutations that you'll not know until you try. Fortunutely, some online retailers have a "satisfaction guaranteed or your money back less shipping" deal, for many of their items. Two that come to mind are of course ALLHAILBOBGollihur and Lou Roten (

    I know there are at least a few who have used and been happy with the ATM35. Use the search function to dig up old threads if there's not a Newbie Link. There was at least one large thread where all of these mics were discussed.
  9. In fact, someone (maybe Rick Jones at AI) told me the ATM35 was used to record Ray Brown on one of the Telarc recordings. Don't know which recording, though.
  10. After much reading, I'm leaning towards the AKG D112. I have a low profile tripod stand with a 19" gooseneck for angle control... should work well for the bass.

  11. larry


    Apr 11, 2004
    I own and use the Shure Beta 98 H/C. The best features are that, as a condenser mic, the sound is very nice. The fact that it can clip on the bridge and stay securely in one spot even if you move around is great. It weighs little and does not affect the sound much even when being clipped on the bridge. Remember, you'll need phantom power for it.

    Downside - much like any mic, the bleed from other instruments and the possible feedback. I pretty much only use mine for live recording, or large gigs where I need a mic to go to the house PA. For my amp, I use a pick-up (Fishman Full Circle and/or an Upton Solo).

    I've tried the D112 with similar results. Mics are great at very low volumes. Beyond that, you'll tear your hair out.
  12. You won't find a good sitar piezo. I have tried without success. The sitar would need something like 5 piezos : one on each of the bridges, one on the superior gourd, one on the neck... A mike captures better the sympathetic ringings that is so divine with the sitar.

    But the upright bass can have good results with piezos if they have a good balance of strings and body sounds that go well with the instrument, IMHO the bass is a way more simple instrument in matters of acoustics. Stay away from the BP-100, unless you want to combine it with something else. The new Fishman, the Realist and the BassMax are good options. Considering the price, starting you quest with the BassMax would be a good idea.
  13. JeffKissell

    JeffKissell Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Soquel, CA
    On the two live recordings I have, the ATM35 was used for the bass. Ray Brown Trio "Bassface,Live At Kuumbwa"(BTW, I went to that show) and the Ray Brown Trio, "Live At Starbucks." The bass sound is very good on both CD's.
    What I would like to know is whether you can use this mic with a small combo amp. I assume that using the 9v for power would let one use almost any preamp. Comments? Suggestions?
    thanks, JK
  14. uptonbass

    uptonbass Proprietor, Upton Bass String Instrument Co.

    Oct 8, 2002
    Mystic CT
    We must remember what was around when the BP-100 came out.....hardly anything. This is the pickup that launched Fishman.

    But oh man the sound.....nothing usable in the slightest.

    People still call and want them, they wont hear any different regardless of what we tell them. Go figure.

    Gary Upton
    [email protected]
  15. Lucerne


    Jan 13, 2005
    Mike I agree that most of the sound from transducer may be taken from the bridge but for me it only goes to prove how important the bridge itself is. I have tried a couple of different bridges and their importance is akin to transmitting the sound like the needle of a record player. With these bridges I also got sounds that acoustically may sound great with one bridge and grim with another but when amped up the opposite happens.

    Finally i am now using a fairly soft bridge with yep a bp-100 and the sound i get is seriously really good and authentic. It is very much a combination of bridge-pickup-preamp (if needed) for YOUR bass which may not work remotely on another that is the main thing. I tried the realist which on this bass was too muffled and an underwood which was pretty good but having read the above I thought i'd let you know that this particular pickup (bp100) works as close for me to a true sound with clarity and weight. I also have no feedback problems. The only difference is i put the pickups on the opposte side of the bridge to where they are advised to go

    Good luck
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